Hundreds of athletes reach Beijing 2022 with support from Olympic Solidarity

Of the 2,902 athletes competing at the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, hundreds were supported on their journey to the Games by funding from Olympic Solidarity.

Flag bearer Richardson Viano of Team Haiti carries their flag during the Opening Ceremony of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics at the Beijing National Stadium on February 04, 2022 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images) Getty Images

A total of 236 athletes who received individual athlete Beijing 2022 scholarships qualified to take part in Beijing:

  • 139 men and 97 women
  • representing 67 National Olympic Committees (NOCs)
  • from five continents
  • competing in five winter sports.

The 236 scholarship-holders include Richardson Viano, the 19-year-old who will become Haiti’s first-ever Winter Olympian when he competes in Alpine skiing. Yesterday, during the Opening Ceremony, he was one of the 65 flagbearers (34 men and 31 women) who have benefited from a Beijing 2022 scholarship.

Since late 2019, 429 athletes from 80 NOCs have benefited from individual Beijing 2022 scholarships to support their qualification efforts.

Olympic scholarships contribute essential funding to cover an athlete’s training, travel and competition expenses and are available to all NOCs, but in particular those with the greatest need. 


Tailored support to athletes, teams and NOCs

There are also seven teams (one men’s and six women’s teams) from six NOCs competing at Beijing 2022 who have been supported on their journey to the Games by Olympic Solidarity’s Team Support Grant programme.

They will compete in curling and ice hockey, and are among a total of 16 teams from 13 NOCs to receive a team support grant over the past four-year cycle, to ensure that athletes could take part in regional and continental competitions as well as Beijing 2022 qualification events.

In addition, 13 NOCs competing at the 2022 Winter Games have benefited from Olympic Solidarity’s tailor-made Beijing programme, which offers flexible use of a fixed budget to NOCs with the largest Olympic Winter Games delegations to support their athletes.

Great performances from scholarship-holders at Tokyo 2020

Overall, there are 91 NOCs competing at Beijing 2022, equalling the record participation from the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 four years ago. Two NOCs are participating for the first time: Haiti and Saudi Arabia. More recently, at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, Olympic Solidarity grants and scholarships helped a record 93 NOCs win medals – more than at any previous edition of the Games.

Just like for Tokyo 2020, NOCs have incurred additional COVID-19 countermeasures costs in their preparations for and participation in Beijing 2022, in particular due to testing requirements, and increased travel and logistical costs. In November 2021, to help the NOCs cover these costs, the IOC’s Olympic Solidarity Commission approved an additional subsidy worth USD 5 million.

About Olympic Solidarity

The aim of Olympic Solidarity is to provide assistance to all NOCs for athlete development programmes, in particular those with the greatest need of it. This assistance is provided through multi-faceted programmes prioritising athlete development, but also training for coaches and sports administrators, and promoting the Olympic values.

The IOC distributes 90 per cent of all its revenues for the benefit of the athletes and the development of sport and Paralympic sport around the globe. With this solidarity funding model, the equivalent of USD 5 billion was distributed during the past Olympiad, or USD 3.4 million per day. This financial support benefits not just a few countries or a few sports. It benefits all the athletes from all 206 NOCs, the Refugee Olympic Team and all Olympic sports, whether popular or less popular, thereby ensuring true universality and diversity at the Olympic Games and within the Olympic community. The Olympic Solidarity programme is one of those through which the IOC’s revenues are distributed.

Olympic Solidarity

Cycling Track at London 2012
Olympic Solidarity redistributes the share of the broadcast rights from the Olympic Games through programmes offered to all 206 National Olympic Committees. All Olympic Solidarity’s programmes are aimed at developing and promoting sport worldwide, and encouraging athletes’ participation in the Olympic Games.
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